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executive decision

Can AOL Call Itself the Brand Company Without a Chief Marketing Officer?

Posted by Sheila Shayon on December 3, 2012 04:05 PM

AOL Inc. calls itself the "brand company, committed to continuously innovating, growing, and investing in brands and experiences that inform, entertain, and connect the world." Now the brand company is without a branding head.

Jolie Hunt, AOL's chief marketing officer and communications head since July, is leaving the company less than five months after being hired away from head marketer at Thomson Reuters. According to the Wall Street Journal, the travel-loving Hunt's departure comes one week before AOL unveils a $10 million branding campaign and marks the fourth top AOL marketing and communications executive to leave this year. The company announced back in February its intention to launch a branding campaign to get consumers to care about AOL again.

Hunt — who was responsible for "AOL’s global communications strategy, including internal and external communications; social media; corporate social responsibility and cause related initiatives; corporate events (and) AOL’s global brand development, partnerships and consumer marketing initiatives" — had previously served as SVP and global head of brand for Thomson Reuters.

In June, Maureen Sullivan, the SVP of brand, marketing and communications, was reassigned to GM of women's content and lifestyle brands. Instead of of filling the CMO role, AOL is now looking for a new chief communications officer, as AOL CEO Tim Armstrong told Ad Age today. Hunt's departure and the restructuring have yet to be announced, meanwhile; the only exec announcement was a new business development head for three of its tech properties.Continue reading...

social media

Facebook's Zuckerberg Admits Mistakes in Post-IPO Appearance

Posted by Shirley Brady on September 11, 2012 06:01 PM

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg made a rare appearance today, speaking at TechCrunch Disrupt in a "fireside chat," marking his first public remarks since his company's disappointing IPO in May. In a bid for transparency and humility, Zuckerberg said he's "ready to double down" on the company's future. He also admitted making mistakes, including betting too much on HTML5, and talked up his focus on mobile and advertising as a way to bolster revenue and FB's stock price. He also denied rumors of a Facebook phone being in the works while confirming new product development including a search engine. He even gave a shout-out to other tech brands he thinks are "killing it" right now: Spotify, Airbnbn, Nike+ and Runkeeper. Read more on TechCrunch.

brand news

In the News: Yahoo, Amazon, Weight Watchers, Target & more

Posted by Shirley Brady on September 8, 2011 08:45 AM

In the News

Yahoo's former CEO Carol Bartz reportedly receives $10M severance package as issues that led to her firing emerge.

Weight Watchers outperforms rivals (and medically supervised diets) in new study.

Target takes New York Fashion Week by storm with 25-foot doll to promote Missoni collaboration.

Amazon cuts deal on California taxes, plans to bring click and collect service to UK.

AOL severs ties with TechCrunch founder Michael Arrington.

Apple cries foul on Chinese logo (when it should be LG); gets nod for clean, green store design; and may need a third campus in Cupertino by 2015.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: AT&T Haggles, BP Eyes Growth, Yahoo Assesses Future

Posted by Dale Buss on September 7, 2011 08:48 AM

In the News

Post Carol Bartz ousterYahoo may look for next leader in advertising as site retains financial advisers and mulls sale.

President Obama is expected to seek a $300-billion jobs package in his address to Congress tomorrow night.

AT&T could cut price of buying T-Mobile if regulator demands become too onerous.

BP casts about for new growth strategy.

Bank of America executes major shakeup of leadership.

Benetton unveils sexy image overhaul.

Borders is sued over layoffs.Continue reading...

brand news

Brands to Watch: Netflix, Hostess, Oracle

Posted by Shirley Brady on September 1, 2011 06:36 PM

Brands to WatchNetflix and Starz contract renewal talks break off, ending one of Netflix's "most important" (though less so, lately) content deals.

Hostess Brands, maker of Twinkies and Wonder Breadretains restructuring advisers.

Oracle $1.3 billion verdict against SAP overturned by judge.

Accera Inc.'s Axona milkshake raises hopes for Alzheimer's patients.

Air Australia reveals new livery.

Airbnb expands into sublets.

Amazon bargains to avoid online sales tax in California.

American Airlines disputes survey saying it had the longest call-waiting times during Hurricane Irene, hires pet detective to track missing-at-JFK passenger Jack the Cat.Continue reading...

brand launch

Fusion Garage is TabCo: Universal "Meh" Ensues

Posted by Robert Truglia on August 15, 2011 04:09 PM

The wait is over, the mystery has been solved, and the question What the #@$% is TabCo? has been answered.  Apparently TabCo is actually Fusion Garage, and its highly-anticipated tablet is called Grid10. This morning, Fusion Garage CEO Chandrasekar Rathakrishnan revealed his company’s new product, their mission to differentiate, and their discontent with Apple's de facto monopoly on innovation in electronics.

Fusion Garage, founded in 2008, is known for having severed ties with TechCrunch over the CrunchPad and the failed JooJoo tablet, but now they’re back with a vengeance. They’ve developed a tablet, smartphone, and completely new operating system--all under the brand name Grid.

What makes the Grid OS different? Based on the Android, Grid OS seeks to change the user experience to a simpler, more intuitive, and more social interaction. The interface appears as a grid, and everything from web browsing to volume control has been rethought. The Grid OS will support apps from its upcoming Grid Shop as well as Android apps. Fusion Garage also stands up to another tech giant, Google, by choosing Bing as their search engine, offering a “chromeless browsing experience." Continue reading...

brand news

Brands to Watch: AOL, BMW, Time Warner Cable

Posted by Shirley Brady on March 15, 2011 06:00 PM

Brands to Watch

Japan's nuclear situation is "approaching Chernobyl" says official, as locals stock up and fears rise.

Adobe prepares for a possible future without Flash.

AOL and TechCrunch expose editorial differences in the wake of Engadget editors' departure.

Apple and other tablet-makers are poised to see lift from corporate IT sales.

BlackBerry-maker RIM thought the iPad would be a flop.

BMW set for record sales despite rising costs as former designer heads to Samsung.

Diddy isn't giddy about being named richest hip-hop artist.

eBay cuts fees and expands offering to attract sellers.Continue reading...

web watch

Facebook Explains New Commenting Feature

Posted by Shirley Brady on March 4, 2011 10:30 AM

Discovery's cable network websites, the Examiner.com and newspaper publishers big and small are already using Facebook's new comments plug-in. Still, not everyone's convinced by it — even TechCrunch, which incorporated Facebook Comments, admits the platform has its pros and cons.

Cue Facebook, which released the video above pitching why it's looking to take over comments on third-party websites.

The answer, of course, as GigaOm's Mathew Ingram writes: to "own the conversation" and drive commenters back to Facebook.

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